Decision to introduce voter ID backfired on the Conservatives - Yorkshire Post Letters

From: Roger Backhouse, Orchard Road, Upper Poppleton, York.

Thank you for excellent coverage of Yorkshire election results which I read with more than usual interest.

One thing stood out. Even inYorkshire the turnout was one of the lowest ever, despite a long campaign and the well publicised Reform Party standing, which I'd expect to increase election interest.

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Whilst there are many reasons for voter apathy the requirement to show photographic identification put many off voting. Given the previous low levels of fraud in English, Scottish and Welsh elections it was always bizarre that the Conservatives introduced that requirement. A surprisingly large number do not have such photo ID readily available and certainly weren't likely to trek some distance to their council offices to obtain one.

A labrador outside a polling station during the 2024 General Election. PIC: Jacob King/PA WireA labrador outside a polling station during the 2024 General Election. PIC: Jacob King/PA Wire
A labrador outside a polling station during the 2024 General Election. PIC: Jacob King/PA Wire

When a Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg was right to call it an attempt at gerrymandering. Conservatives thought it would tend to discourage those more likely to vote Labour. Instead it seems to have backfired badly on Rishi Sunak's party as happened at the time of the last local elections.

Labour have promised to look again at the need for voter photographic ID. That's good but if they reckon it has worked in their favour will we see an about-turn to keep it? Politics is a cynical business.

Meanwhile, I wish the newly elected MPs well in their new roles. Britain faces many problems and needs change, I can only hope they are up to the tasks ahead.

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